Thursday, 27 October 2011

Trains, No Planes, But There Was Some Automobiles

I left this story as a comment on another blog about a really bad experience with public transport, and thought I might as well share it here as well. Because, well, I take whatever ideas I can get. This is the story of my disastrous trip to London, the hobo capital of England.

It all started when a friend from America told me that he was coming to England and he was going to go from here to France on a ferry (I'm not too sure why he didn't just go to France) and he asked me if I wanted to go with him. I did. This trip was actually why I got my passport. I lost the one I got made up when I went on that ski trip.

Anyway, I booked my train ticket well in advance so it was cheap. You really have to do this. Really. Trains are stupidly expensive which is why no one uses them. Anyway, there was a train change involved, so in the morning I went down to the station complete with backpack and tickets, and boarded my train.

Not long after, when it came to the switchover, I discovered that I had actually MISSED MY NEXT TRAIN. I did this by catching the wrong train in the first place. Thankfully these were the days when I kept my phone on me, and topped up, so I gave my dad a call and he bought me a ticket to London. I think that ticket came close to, or passed, triple digits. I know that getting on the wrong train in the first place was pretty much all my fault, but it would have been nice for someone to check my ticket and inform me of my mistake.

Anyway, this meant that I came to London late, so it's no real surprise to note that when I got there, my friend was nowhere to be found. He had already left because he didn't think I was turning up. This meant I was stranded in London with barely any money. So again I called my dad, explained the situation, and he was nice enough to buy me another ticket, this time a ticket home. Well, to a station near home, there was nothing going directly to where I live at that time.

While I was at the other station, a group of chavs turned up in the car park. I can't think of a term to call chavs for foreign readers, but they're the people you see throwing stones at cars, drinking beer at all times of the day, and thinking  they're tough because they're surrounded by their friends. I still thank whoever might be up there that they didn't notice me, that was the last thing I needed.

Eventually my dad turned up to pick me up, and I ended up safely at home, but my dad was over £200 out of pocket just because I messed up, and insisted on still going even though if I'd stopped to think I would have realised he would have already gone and left without me.

To be honest I still feel really bad about that. I intend to give him that money back, and the money that both of my parents spent on the ski trip.

29 comments:

  1. Damn man, that is real expensive. I think another word for Chav could be douchebag. I may be wrong though.

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  2. Chav can sometimes be called scumbag, that's one disaster of an experience though.

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  3. @R.gers Public transport, especially trains, is incredibly expensive. Despite all the calls to lower prices, they never do. If they did though, they would probably see an increase in profits. Douchebags are more...the kind of people you see on Jersey Shore.

    @The Angry Lurker That's a good word for them lol. It was quite the disaster yeah but I got through it alive. I'm good.

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  4. Haven't tried riding on a train (travels long distances). Don't know if we still have that here in the Philippines.. Not sure. Hmm.. People here usually ride on buses, jeepneys and MRT/LRTs (trains, but for short distances).. and planes and ships for long-distance trips. The Philippines is an archipelago (which is cool, but it kinda suck.. actually. lol. another story)..

    That was an expensive (and messed-up) trip. And it's really nice of your dad to buy you tickets and to pick you up. Well, though I'm sure he's pissed, I know he couldn't let you get stranded in London with no dough..

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  5. @Leah I think I was more pissed off at me than he was. I made several mistakes that day.

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  6. wait WAIT WAIT wait, all of that was a comment? HUGE.

    But train tickets are THAT expensive over yonder in England? Hot damn.. But guess it's partly because you travel much further distances. The Netherlands aren't so big, so no room for long train trips.

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  7. I learned something today. Chav. Yes, we prefer scumbag, thug, or douchebag, but a rose is a rose is a rose, right?

    Also, the only time I actually didn't mind public transportation was in Chicago. I certainly wouldn't try that here in Colorado. Too many homeless people and 'chavs' for my taste.

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  8. @Fang All of what was a comment? O_O England might be bigger than the Netherlands, but it's still not that far. The journey was only a few hours.

    @ABFTS Have fun with your new word, and use it well lol. I'm not too bad with buses, my only problem with them is getting on them for the first time. Once I know where I have to get off, I'm usually okay. Same with trains really, it's just the prices that are quite ridiculous.

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  9. Chavs you say? We call them nacos, gente raspa, or chilangos. xD

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  10. You're right about the last recipe, I have to "translate" the ingredients to occidental similar ones, by the way, how can I quote messages in the comments?

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  11. @My 2 Pesos They are, the filthy criminal scum.

    @Laughing Vault It really really was -_-

    @Interwebs Fails The word "Chav" can be interchanged by any word that essentially means "scum". Those are some fun words though.

    @Orang3 It was more that they were ingredients I wouldn't expect to find at any shop near me, I think maybe trying to find alternative ingredients might be a better solution. As for quoting things, I'm not too sure what you mean, I just reference who I'm responding to. I used to be able to link straight to them, and I think if clicked it it showed their comment, but I can't do that since I swapped the reply button that does that for highlighted comments.

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  12. chavs sound like thugs

    I know how you feel! It can really haunt you when you screw up and it costs someone else money. But that's life! Live and learn.

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  13. @Bersercules That is a general term for them too. I did learn, but I'm the type who obsesses over debts, even non-existent ones. If I had a kid, and I got him out of a bind like this, I don't think I would expect anything back. Taking care of a kid is just what a parent does.

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  14. Hey there's nothing like dear ol' dad coming to the rescue. BTW...that movie is a classic.

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  15. @Copyboy True but I still do wish it hadn't come to that. You're the first person to point out the reference, you earn the prize. The prize is the self satisfaction felt at knowing the reference.

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  16. What an awful experience! Glad it worked out okay though.

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  17. @Heaven Yep it worked out just fine in the end :)

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  18. WOW! And haha, is it true that you guys call Lady Sovereign Lady Chav? xD

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  19. @Jodie-Ann I don't know or really care what we call her really, but she is one of the epitomes of chav.

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  20. Punks. I'd go with punks. Or maybe ne'erdowells.

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  21. @Henry I like the word ne'erdoweels too much to waste it on them lol.

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  22. your dad is awesome Mark and your friend sucks. if he only waited a little longer but of course you're late and why in the world would you go in to the wrong train anyway? why didn't check it first yourself? haha..you're funny!

    but you know, it happened to me also, but it was way back 2008..I rode a different jeepney, I was tired and sleepy to noticed it was the wrong one (from the hospital watching after grandma). it was around 6am in the morning and when I finally noticed, I have no choice but to get off, but the problem was-I don't have money so I have to walk and luckily maybe after 15mins, one jeepney stopped and offer a ride :(( that was the worst morning ever :((

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  23. ya this happened to me a while back too... I missed my train and had to spend the next five nights in Amsterdam... in the red light district!!! Until I could catch the next train back to my girlfriend.... exhausted!!

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  24. Missing a ride is the worst, especially when it's public transport...

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  25. @Mai Yang My dad is awesome, but I can forgive my friend. I was over an hour (possibly 2) late. I think I would have left too. That sounds pretty bad :( I'm glad it worked out well in the end though.

    @Yeah there's not much....worse? than being trapped in the Amsterdam red light district lol.

    @Shaw It really, really is.

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  26. That's what parents are for.
    You only went to London and got stranded, my son went to Morocco and lost all his money. I don't even want to remember how much that cost me. And all he brought me back was an ashtray he stole from the hotel.

    I read the latest post before this now I'm really thinking we were thinking about the same things.

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  27. @Dirtycowgirl Ouch that's way worse than what happened to me. At least he got you an ashtray lol.

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